When I finished knitting a recent sweater, I had some wonderful Icelandic wool leftover. About that same time I found the Clacks mittens pattern. I thought it might be perfect for using up more of the Lettlopi wool.
About a year or so ago I knit a stranded mitten pattern by designer Virginia Settler-Reimer. I hadn’t knit any colorwork mittens at that point and was only just beginning to get the hang of mitten knitting overall. The pattern was Glissade mittens and I used Brooklyn Tweed’s Arbor yarn. Between the beautiful yarn and the well written pattern I thoroughly enjoyed making that pair of mittens.
Now, the designer has come out with a new, similar pattern called Clacks Mittens. Just like Glissade, this pattern has the thumb on the side, which means both right and left hands will be knit the same way. In fact, I have never knit mittens, or fingerless mitts, with a different type of thumb!
Why I Like the Glissade and Clacks Mittens Patterns
Both patterns are by designer Virginia Sattler-Reimer and this link goes to her Ravelry page. Anyone already familiar with mitten knitting and doing colorwork would find this pattern fun and easy to follow.
- Both Glissade and Clacks mittens begin with a Latvian Braid (directions included in pattern). Then, we jump right into knitting the colorwork. There is no boring ribbed cuff to knit first.
- The mittens are knit on 4 DPNs which separates the front stitches from the back with a line of similar colored stitches. The first two needles hold the first half of the pattern, and the last two hold the remainder. I use a 9-inch circular needle to cast on and do the braid before changing to DPNs. (The second needle will hold the thumb stitches as well.)
- The “make one” stitch is a backwards loop (Andrea Mowry video) which is super easy.
- I don’t remember this from knitting Glissade, but for Clacks, the designer has provided two charts – one for a light colored background and one for a dark. Because blue is my chosen MC – I’m following the “dark” chart and using Knit Companion.
- The Kitchener Stitch (Very Pink Knits slow-motion video) is needed for the top of the mitten and because there are only a few stitches, it is perfect practice for anyone unfamiliar with this finishing stitch.
Yarn and Knit Companion
After I first saw this pattern, I began to hunt through my stash to find yarn to use. The pattern calls for two colors only, and I just happened to have some Lettlopi yarn leftover from a recent sweater. I decided that this wool would be perfect for mittens.
Once the pattern was purchased it was added to Knit Companion and opened on my iPad. From there, it is easy to follow the colorwork pattern line by line.
I had considered changing to a larger size needle at the thumb, to knit the hand a bit wider, but ended up not doing so and the fit is fine. Maybe do this if you have wide hands. Also these mittens are plenty long (for me) already. Measurements are 3.5 – 3.75 inches wide and 11 inches long.
Fair Isle Mittens and Fingerless Mitts I Have Knit.
After knitting for a while, I’ve discovered that I like to knit hats, mittens (and mitts) and sweaters best. I prefer Fair Isle colorwork and think it is especially nice for mittens to add extra bulk and warmth.